ICT for Sustainability - The Challenge of Making It Real


“ICT for sustainability” is about utilizing the transformational power of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) for making our world more sustainable: saving energy and material resources by creating more value from less physical input, increasing quality of life for ever more people without compromising future generations´ ability to meet their needs. While the potential of ICTs´ contribution to sustainability has been increasingly recognized during the last decades, implementing this potential has proven to be a challenge. Read more in the background documents which are provided on this website.


The ICT4S conference aims to bring together leading researchers from the technical, natural and social science disciplines:

  • to take stock of the role of ICT in sustainability and to improve the methods of measuring the positive and negative effects of ICT;
  • to create an interdisciplinary synopsis, to inspire new approaches to unleash the potential of ICT for sustainability in various fields of application, from production to consumption;
  • to improve methodologies of evaluating, developing, and governing the effects of ICT systems on the sustainability of societal and environmental systems.


The ICT4S conference will bring together leading researchers in ICT for Sustainability with government and industry leaders. Decision-makers with an interest in using ICT for sustainability, researchers focusing on ICT effects on sustainability and developers of sustainable ICT systems or applications should attend this conference.


Topic 1: Sustainability through ICT

1.1 ICT for Energy Management and Planning
ICT for energy efficiency, smart energy systems, smart grids, smart metering, ICT and renewables

1.2 ICT and Dematerialization
ICT for material efficiency, ICT-supported life cycle thinking, ICT and product-service systems, smart recycling

1.3 Sustainability in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI)
Creating awareness, supporting behavioural changes, empowering the “green” consumer with information, supporting design for sustainability

1.4 Other enabling effects of ICT for sustainability

Topic 2: Sustainability in ICT

2.1 Energy flows induced by ICT and how to reduce their impact
Energy use in the life cycle of ICT hardware, energy consumption of data centers, decentralized and renewable power generation for ICT, energy harvesting, energy-aware and energy-autonomous systems

2.2 Material flows induced by ICT and how to reduce their impact
Scarce resources used for ICT hardware, electronic waste (e-waste, WEEE), recycling technologies and schemes, environmental and social impacts of ICT-related material flows, future electronics

2.3 Green Design and Green Software
Measuring resource consumption at the level of ICT functions and services, implications of software architecture on hardware load, the potential of software to save hardware resources, sustainability in software engineering, resource-aware software, price transparency in the ICT sector

Topic 3: Economic and Political Dimensions

3.1 Rebound effects and how to avoid them
ICT-induced efficiency and rebound effects, history of ICT-related rebound effects, theories and models of rebound effects, rebound effects vs. intended growth, political frameworks for avoiding rebound effects

3.2 Energy markets
Role of ICT in the deregulation of electricity markets, ICT and dynamic prices, electronic energy markets, enabling political frameworks for smart energy use

3.3 Economics of ICT hardware
Supply security of the resources used in ICT, geopolitical aspects of critical metals, economics of e-waste recycling, world commodity markets and ICT